"are you going to go to the global night commute?"
"i'm not sure.... will you go if it's just you?"
".... yeah. yeah, i will."
tomorrow night, i, along with (hopefully) members of my fellowship will be participating in the global night commute to hopefully urge our government to urge the ugandan government to do something about the invisible children in uganda.
and it doesn't even make sense -- i have maybe four hours free this weekend, and i'm spending the night in the park in 30 degree weather thinking i'll make a difference halfway across the world.
but maybe that's why i feel so compelled to do it. 'cause i know i am just me, and this is me doing what i can. for the first few days after the screening of invisible children, i'd see their faces before i fall asleep. i'd wonder what it'd be like to walk every night to escape capture -- me, who complains about walking 1.25 miles from the engineering quad compared to kids who walk 1.25 hours every night (not to mention every morning.)
why do i take such things for granted? :/ sometimes it feels like it's not enough...
i wish we could open our eyes
oh what a beautiful view..
so this past week, (when things have been more low-key in terms of psets and projects), i've been spending more time on the keys.
now, for someone who hasn't played regularly oh in, a good seven years? it took a bit of time getting used to the black and whites. i kept clanging on the wrong keys on the simplest of songs, getting majors and minors mixed up, not being able to pick out chords from songs i've been guitaring to for years.
but somewhere, between the low rise stairs and the laundry room, reminds me of why i love music so much. why i feel so at home just listening to praise team practice, or hearing someone play praise songs in sage chapel. pianos, guitars, (..drums? o_O) draw us nearer to the melody that plays in our Dad's hearts. and when we play it.. when we let the notes and His presence take over... we're truly in the presence of our King. :)
an unnamed stranger // the eleventh hour
"There's an open seat here." She heard a voice from the table. The voice belonged to a man who looked warm and oddly familiar, thought she had never laid eyes on him in her life.
"Thanks. It's freezing outside." She chuckled slightly, proceeding to pull off her wool jacket. "What are you up to here?"
He smiled slightly. "I'm not from here -- I'm somewhat of a passerby. I'm sorry, I have to go now though. I'll see you later though," She thought she saw weariness cloud his eyes for a moment, then fade as he got up and walked away. He pace slowed as he approached the door, where she saw the silohouettes of several men waiting for him outside. Who could he be? And why are they taking him away like that?
The same wooden floors creaked as she walked in again. She'd been here before, walked those steps before... and heard the familiar voice again and he invited her to the open seat.
"Wait, this isn't... I've been here before. And you were too, and you were taken away before. Why?" She questioned him as she sat down, ignoring the fact that her coat was still on.
He smiled slightly as he shook his head. "You can say it's something I have to do. I'm sorry, I have to go now, I'll see you soon, I promise." He started to get up once again.
"No!" She was surprised at her own outburst, realizing that... she worried about this man. "I don't even know your name! I mean.. where are they taking you? It's not like they're going taking you away to kill you or something.. are they?"
His eyes slowly lifted to meet hers, and she felt an inexplicable sense of understanding and sadness as he didn't respond. She felt like she could see the whole world and more in his eyes, and that he could see her whole world in hers. She didn't realize that she was holding her breath until he lowered his eyes and walked towards the door, towards the shadows once again.
The wood creaked faster this time as she rushed into the room, still not understanding why the same scene was occuring over and over, but knowing she had to talk to him. Spotting him, she didn't have to wait for him to invite her over as her urgency took the seat nex to his.
"I don't understand... why do you have to die? Who are they... who are you? Please don't go..." The desperation in her own voice scared her. Being one who brushed shoulders with apathy more often than care, the feelings of love inside of her were growing at a rate she didn't understand. She only knew one thing... she was cared for this unnamed stranger.
"I'm sorry... I'm sorry, it's something I have to do. I have to go soon..." She grabbed his arm as he proceeded to get up once again.
"No... no, please don't. I can tell you don't want to either," he closed his eyes in silence, "so don't. I can tell those people don't even come in here, you can just stay in here until they leave, or something."
He slowly raised his other arm and rested his hand on hers. She felt a sudden sense of warmth as he spoke. "They won't go away. And it's my choice to go... to leave this place. I'm sorry... I'm sorry, I have to go. But I will see you soon." He carefully removed her hand, and got up and started to walk away. He paused for a moment, looked back at the her image -- a slightly disheveled girl, bitting her lip at this strange man leaving her life -- sighed, and proceeded onward.
The doors opened once again, but the wood remained untouched. Slowly raising her glance up once again, she caught his burdened ones. His eyes said it all -- a resolution that he was still going to go through with it, he was going to meet the shadows on the other side of the lodge.... he would die. A deep sense of mourning rose from the pits of her stomach as she let the door swing shut in front of her, turning her back to him and rushing out into the coldness of the path. Taking a few steps, she collapsed in a pile of leaves and snow, letting out an agonizing sob into her hands.
Moments passed until she felt the presence of another near her. It was him -- she could feel him kneeling down, wrapping his arms around her shoulders.
"I don't... I don't understand. Why? Why you? There has to be someone else right? Why you...?" She choked the words out through her tears, and finally lifted her tear-stained eyes to him. His face was a perfectly painted portrait of sorrow and love, mingling with tears as he started to cry too.
"It's not that I want to... but there is none other. But .... I love you, and I'm doing this for you." He slowly reached for one of her trembling hands, and pressed it against her own heart. "This is the reason... I must die."
The sorrow swelling in her own heart was almost too much to bear as she started to sob once again. It was in that moment that the swirls of sorrow met love, a love so deep that she had never experienced anything like it... and then it hit. And she spoke, in a voice so quiet that the bitter winds of the outside almost swept them away.
"I know your name... I know who you are."
A smile broke through the tears as he helped her stand up. "I know who you are too. I have to go now... but I'll see you later... I promise."
i wrote this after a dream i had -- the events and dialouge are as closely mirrored to as i remember. i was the girl in the dream -- slightly disheveled, but finding the name of her Savior at the end. i had never felt the type of sorrow i felt at the end when i realized that every time i sinned, every time i spat on the gospel with how i live my life was another nail piercing Christ's skin... yet he dies. He dies... for me, for you, for us who he loves so deeply. the more we learn to love him, we realize the more and more he loves us and has loved us this entire time...
Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. -- romans 5.7-8
Trace the shape of my heart
Till it becomes more familiar to Your eyes
I've been lost without You
Cold without Your love
It's taken days and nights
To make me realize
Rescue me from hanging on this line
I won't give up on giving You
The chance to blow my mind
Let the eleventh hour quickly pass me by
I'll find You when I think I'm out of time
i've been hearing a lot of convicting things lately. a lot of wisdom seeping into these ears -- from a professor of civil engineering last week during good friday, to the alumni speaking and sharing this past weekened, to a blind doctor overcoming the temptations for the drive of success, to pastor bob today speaking on song of songs, something churches usually don't tackle, to talk about how women struggle with self worth and what love, genesis 2 kind of love should look like.
and it's been a whirlwind of things that you nod vigorously to during the messages, take intensive notes, reflect later on during quiet times. but i hope -- i want for more. it's so tempting to hear these things, be struck in the heart during the time, then have it fade with time....
it's something we should strive towards, right? for God's words, His wisdom, His messages, encouragements to be ingrained in our lives so deeply.... we have ears.... but to really hear......
tell me whats going on inside of me?
i despire my own behavior
this only serves to confirm my suspicions...
i'm still a man in need of a Savior..
i wanna be in the light as You are in the light
not maybe someday, come.
He came, comes, and will forever come to our rescue. past, present, future... everlasting.
and it's so easy to take that for granted. on monday, i ended up reading jeremiah in rockefeller during prayer mtg --
19 Your wickedness will punish you;
your backsliding will rebuke you.
Consider then and realize
how evil and bitter it is for you
when you forsake the LORD your God
and have no awe of me,"
declares the Lord, the LORD Almighty.
- jer. 2:19
when we forsake the Lord.. our God.. and have no awe of Him.
sometimes i feel like our faith is so concrete that we leave so many of His commandments on paper, in our xangas, our journals, our bibles, quiet time books. how much more glorifying it will be when we scribe these things in our hearts... to live in ways that show that we are in awe of a God who is everlasting.
// discovering more and more what it means to be in awe of this awe-some God.
sometimes i can't wait for you to come.
but sometimes i think i'm scared of you. scared of what it'll be like after a year at college (which doesnt feel like college yet). scared of what will happen... what won't happen. maybe i'm scared of disagreements with people. growth clashing with comfort.
summer, the memories you hold are of frisbees whizzing by at night and stars in the green fresh cut grass and caribou coffee and chipotle and late night donut runs just 'cause j. had a coupon.
i think i'm scared of too much.
i thought about putting a link to this blog on my profile or somewhere more public.. but then i thought against it. maybe i'm not ready for people to see how messed up this daughter of God really is, haha.
who even reads this anyway...
it's the deepest sort of lamentation. the kind where you know you're not empty, not let down, not forsaken... but it feels like that.
and you know what the saddest part is?
it was handed to me, given freely out of love. and i rejected it out of fear.
i feel like my arms are tied by my own insecure fear and i forget, why do i forget how powerful YOU are and how You even command the angels!! why am i so fearful... why was i so hesitant... i've been walking around feeling so much sorrow, and i just want to sit and be still and let You find me... i'm sorry. i know i don't deserve this. any of this.
who knew one day could tell you so much about how much you could miss one small thing.
urgh... i feel like i can't tell anyone 'cause they'd think i were crazy. maybe i am.
it has begun.
this is it.
when Jesus rises on this day... Satan knows it's on. he knows that he's lost... that Jesus has conquered even death itself, and has come back to claim His loved ones.
but satan's not giving up that easily. he's desperate. and he's going to do whatever it takes to try to tear down our guards.
it has begun.
are we ready?
more and more
last night at algae, we watched crash. and a resounding... 7 people stayed. why? i guess 'cause others thought it was more important to drink bubble tea (holds two fingers up!) than explore the issues of God's injustice.
... okay i might be exaggerating a bit, haha.
but yeah.. i dunno. when i was in hs and even college, until nycup, i never wanted to explore God's injustice. not that i said no to it, but just... didn't further my knowledge on it. i lived in a comfortable, predominantly white, rich suburb of illinois. and i had it comfortable.
last night, one scene in crash is when the father finds his daughter under the bed, hiding because she heard a gunshot.
.. that girl looked so much like samantha from lpac.
sigh.. i've been praying so hard for those lpac kids.. but sometimes i wonder if that's not enough. i feel like i need to be doing something more tangible, more real, more.... not stuck in this white bubble =/
somewhere inbetween throwing baseball caps on the arts quad after prayer tent kickoff... gathering in olin, then uris for the free bagels :P, drinking pina colada smoothies off of your points, being a little silly, talking about where we'll all be four years from now, --
it felt right.
at 11:35 in libe cafe
.. yeah =]
tonight was good.
today's been good.
this week's been good.
ooh yeah, and who said b. wasn't overprotective? :P
(while we were talking about the many many books i havent finished, one of them being wild at heart)
A: wat the
A: why r u reading that
A: ur a girl!
A: does it help understand guys?
A: do u have a guy ur trying to understand?!?!?!
A: ARE YOU TRYING TO FIND UR ADAM?!?!?!
A: haha ok
A: just makin sure
You work in really weird ways, Dad.
it's okay though. i trust You :)
or exactly smoothly run
but it was from God. and it was a huuuge blessing :)
the chaos actually reminded me of a certain night when certain youth group leaders were on sabbath but forgot to mention it to certain members of servant team... so we ran around trying to find keys, do announcements, etc. etc..... but in a comical way
*as i'm assembling my toms*
".. wendy, where are your cymbals?"
from the beginning when i realized my drums didn't have cymbals... heh [thanks j. for walking all the way from c-town to get me cymbals and fix my toms lol] to ordering waaaay too much food, the delay on the electric not working for some of the songs, not being able to hear w/o moniters, and messing up during some of the songs while b. kept beat with me in the audience :P
to the final set. i got really nervous in the beginning of the first set, and thus started to play really fast to Filled with Your Glory.... but at the end, when i felt like God reminded me that i play for an audience of ONE. not for the praise team, not for myself, not even for the fellowship... if it's not for Him first.
'cause we ARE His beloved... amen?
i'd be lying if i said nothing was wrong with our fellowship. people are petty, sinful, academic-driven, not good at welcoming, loving, keeping accountable, encouraging... but we're people. we mess up. that's why there's His grace... because we wouldn't even be able to praise Him without it.
and for a moment last night... all of those faded away. and it was just us... as messed up as we were... in the presence of our King.
thanks Dad :)
"... people aren't going to get it."
".... what? thats supposed to encourage me?"
"yeah.. 'cause i don't want you to be disappointed when you get back. people are not going to get it. they're going to be caught up in school, academics, even in fellowship. the best we can do is tell them what God's doing outside of cornell, outside of our fellowship even.. and pray that God works in them too."
sigh, i never thought how right you'd be.
since i've decided to explore a concentration in urban planning, the people who are most against it are those in Christian fellowships. and it's hard having the people who you hope will support you, will be praying for you, to say things that... yeah, kinda cut. =/
"i don't understand why you're doing this.. it's so impractical"
"it's just a waste of time. if you want to do it, get out of engineering."
that's just it. i don't want to be stuck in this suffocating Christian bubble where its all fellowship, all the time. i don't want to get the fancy astrophysics degree and work at some spiffy lab where i make a 6 figure salary and live in the suburbs and not care about God's people who are hurting less than an hour away.
but you know, part of me does want that. part of me longs for comfort. and it's hard being somewhere where the people around you tell you to strive for it.
to the... i don't know, three people who have been encouraging me like crazy these past few days, thank you. thank you so much for pushing me to do something more with my faith, for getting out of this bubble so many of us are so prone to living in.
'cause right now...
i feel like i'm standing alone under my convictions.
and it's a lonely place to be.
i'm tired of christianese.
i'm tired of living in a box.
i'm tired of white suburbia Christ, where He's just a bumper sticker and "yay lets worship Jesus" xanga entries.
i'm sick of that!!
i'm sick of how i live under that too. i'm not saying i don't.
but i'm sick of noone questioning it.
i'm sick of everyone accepting things the way they are.
you're right. i AM an idealist. but Jesus is the epitome of that, amen? He's the one who takes our comfortable lives and challenges us, by saying this is NOT the way things are supposed to be.
He paints an image of how beautiful that's going to be in heaven.
and we stay here
using our browns and blacks.
show me how your faith is REAL.
and i'll show you what my God can do.
... if this is what You want me to do... why are You making it so difficult?
the perks of being a wallflower
it's an odd place to be, through the eyes of a wallflower. i wonder what they're thinking -- the ones who are smiling, laughing, goofing off. their smiles seem plastered, fake even. i wonder who wants to be there as much as i do, until the burden of social obligation knocks on their door of solitude. i wonder what they're thinking, those who chuckle politely, those who sit back, taking pictures, those who make the funny comments, who laugh along.
it's an odd place to be.
yet a total of six people asked me if i was okay tonight in a period of about 15 minutes. e. said... i'm not where i'm usually.
maybe tonight's just a night where i feel like leaning against that familiar wall and just watch. in the inbetweens of reality and a place my thoughts often wander. ....
it's an odd place to be.
but sometimes i like it.
times like these
i just had an amazingly long conversation with my youth director from back home about the youth group, and specific things that satan does to attack it.
and now, it's 3:30 am, and im seeing more and more why God wants me home this summer.
i wish i could teach the world to sing
at the end of nycup, we made another list. some words on that one were kids, light, st georges, faces... hope.
i see so much hope in the city now.
Cuz I'm hopeful, yes I am, hopeful for today,
Take this music and use it
Let it take you away,
And be hopeful (hopeful) and He'll make a way
I know it ain't easy but that's okay.
Let's be hopeful :)
really read all the lyrics here --
when the music fades
(from the pages of my sketchbook on the 28th)
somehow... i feel like a little boy named daniel in the bronx understands more about the meaning or worship than i or the meeting around me ever will. because we live in such an easy society. because we live in a society where everything is easy. cheap. phone breaks? buy a new one. so and so breaks, we can replace it, reverse it, buy a new one.
and when we sing songs about grace.. light... hope.. we really don't know what they mean. because we've never really known what it means to be without hope.. mercy... light. it's like being in this normal dreary ithaca weather. it's all that much nicer when the sun comes out....
and here we are. in the united states. acting, singing like we know what hope, love, justice are. how do we really know love without its absence? how do we know what true worship is without knowing what it feels like to be persecuted? not being allowed to sing the contemporary christian songs, the bible that collects dust in the corner. how often do we think worship is a slew of songs, notes, progressions? if this is what it is... then i wish i could go back to new york.
what does worship look like?
a bit of jadedness, questioning, and realization during worship team practice.